Makes 1 two-layer cake

My friend Jeanne Doherty made this cake for years, and ever since she gave it to me, I do too. She got the recipe from another friend’s mother. Lately, I’ve been buying packages of grated carrots and whirring them in the food processor for a few seconds. For 3 cups, you need almost an entire 10-ounce package; or grate about 4 large carrots.


Butter (for the pans)
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups vegetable or canola oil
2 cups granulated sugar
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups grated carrots
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
1. Set the oven at 325 degrees. Butter two 8-inch round cake pans.

2. In a bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon to blend them.

3. In an electric mixer, beat the oil and sugar until blended. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, followed by the vanilla. Blend in the carrots and walnuts.

4. With the mixer set on low speed, blend in the flour mixture.

5. Divide the batter between the pans and smooth the tops. Bake the cakes for 45 minutes or until the tops spring back when pressed lightly with a fingertip.

6. Set the cakes on a wire rack to cool completely.


1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
1 large package (8 ounces) cream cheese, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 pound (3 3/4 cups) confectioners’ sugar
1. In an electric mixer, beat the butter, cream cheese, and vanilla until smooth. Gradually beat in the confectioners’ sugar until the mixture is a spreading consistency.

2. Set one cake rounded side down on a platter. Spread with frosting. Set the other round right side up on the frosting. Frost the top and sides.